Posts tagged ABC
TV and music pioneer Dick Clark dies at age 82
American Bandstand is an American music-performance show that aired in various versions from 1952 to 1989 and was hosted from 1956 until its final season by Dick Clark, who also served as producer. The show featured teenagers dancing to Top 40 music introduced by Clark; at least one popular musical act—over the decades, running the gamut from Jerry Lee Lewis to Run DMC—would usually appear in person to lip-sync one of their latest singles. Freddy “Boom Boom” Cannon holds the record for most appearances at 110.
The show’s popularity helped Dick Clark become an American media mogul and inspired similar long-running music programs, such as Soul Train and Top of the Pops. Clark eventually assumed ownership of the program through his Dick Clark Productions company.
It premiered locally in late September 1952 as Bandstand on Philadelphia television station WFIL-TV Channel 6 (now WPVI-TV), as a replacement for a weekday movie that had shown predominantly British movies. Hosted by Bob Horn as a television adjunct to his radio show of the same name on WFIL radio, Bandstand mainly featured short musical films produced by Snader Telescriptions and Official Films, with occasional studio guests. This incarnation was an early predecessor of sorts of the music video shows that became popular in the 1980s, featuring films that are themselves the ancestors of music videos.
Historic marker at WFIL studiosHorn, however, was disenchanted with the program, so he sought to have the show changed to a dance program, with teenagers dancing along on camera as the records played, based on an idea that came from a radio show on WPEN, The 950 Club, hosted by Joe Grady and Ed Hurst. This more-familiar version of Bandstand debuted on October 7, 1952 in “Studio ‘B’,” which was located in their just-completed addition to the original 1947 building (4548 Market Street), and was hosted by Horn, with Lee Stewart as co-host until 1955. Tony Mammarella was the original producer with Ed Yates as director. The short Snader and Official music films continued in the short term, mainly to fill gaps as they changed dancers during the show—a necessity, as the studio could not fit more than 200 teenagers.
On July 9, 1956, Horn was fired after a drunk-driving arrest, as WFIL and dual owner Walter Annenberg’s The Philadelphia Inquirer at the time were doing a series on drunken driving. He was also involved in a prostitution ring and brought up on morals charges. Horn was temporarily replaced by producer Tony Mammarella before the job went to Dick Clark permanently.
In late spring of 1957, the ABC television network asked their O&O’s and affiliates for programming suggestions to fill their 3:30 p.m. (ET) time slot (WFIL-TV had been pre-empting the ABC program with ‘Bandstand’). Clark decided to pitch the show to ABC brass, and after some badgering the show was picked up nationally, becoming American Bandstand on August 5, 1957.
“Studio ‘B’” measured 80′x42′x24′, but appeared smaller due to the number of props, television cameras, and risers that were used for the show. It was briefly shot in color in 1958 when WFIL-TV began experimenting with the then-new technology. Due to a combination of factors that included the size of the studio, the need to have as much space available for the teenagers to dance, and the size of the color camera compared to the black-and-white models, it was only possible to have one RCA TK-41 where three RCA TK-10s had been used before. WFIL-TV went back to the TK-10s two weeks later when ABC-TV refused to carry the color signal and management realized that the show lost something without the extra cameras.
Clark would often interview the teenagers about their opinions of the songs being played, most memorably through the “Rate-a-Record” segment. During the segment, two audience members each ranked two records on a scale of 35 to 98, after which the two opinions were averaged by Clark, who then asked the audience members to justify their scores. The segment gave rise, perhaps apocryphally, to the phrase “It’s got a good beat and you can dance to it.” In one humorous segment broadcast for years on retrospective shows, comedians Cheech and Chong appeared as the record raters.
Featured artists typically performed their current hits by lip-synching to the released version of the song.
The only person to ever co-host the show with Dick Clark was Donna Summer, who joined him to present a special episode dedicated to the release of the Casablanca film Thank God It’s Friday. Throughout the late `50s and most of the `60s, Clark’s on-camera sidekick was announcer Charlie O’Donnell, who later went on to announce Wheel of Fortune and other programs hosted or produced by Clark, such as The $100,000 Pyramid.
by the BacMaster youtube
Amanda produced a very funny telling Video Blog that to this day is the best Ever.
Amanda Congdon Bio from her website.
Amanda Congdon is a California based on-camera personality, new media pioneer and healthy food entrepreneur.
Upon graduating Magna Cum Laude from Northwestern University, and after a brief stint at Saatchi & Saatchi New York, Amanda entered the nascent world of video blogging. Her career was launched writing and hosting the independent daily internet culture show, Rocketboom. This first online “show” received intense media coverage in national and international, new and traditional media.
Next, she zigzagged across the country producing Amanda Across America, an environmentally-focused video project sponsored by the Natural Resources Defense Council and Ford Escape Hybrid. Subsequently, AC on ABC, made Amanda the first video blogger for a major network, ABC News. It covered a lot of ground, from politics to tech, internet memes to eco concerns. In 2009, she went on to executive produce and host her own mobile TV series: Sometimesdaily. Sometimesdaily focused on some of the same topics, tech and the green issues, but added The New Economy and profiles of innovative entrepreneurs to the mix, all with a side of sketch comedy. Sometimesdaily aired four times weekly on Flo TV Mobile Television, and was an official selection of the Independent Television Festival of 2010.
By October 2010, all this stopped when a health crisis took Amanda to the Cleveland Clinic. When conventional medicine could not solve the problem, and after much reading and discussion, she and her husband Mario Librandi, dramatically changed their diet. The illness vanished in weeks, and a new opportunity emerged: a wellness oriented healthy food venture based on Mario’s unique Italian-influenced vegan creations. Chef Vegan Mario was born.
The new business leased a shared commercial space in downtown Santa Barbara to function as a test kitchen. The word spread, and soon articles appeared in local papers. When well-known Los Angeles based vegan blogger Quarrygirl called Vegan Mario’s™ SCHMICKEN™ her “new favorite product” saying it is “better than the mass produced corporate vegan meats on the market” they knew they had something.
By September 2011, Amanda and Mario decided to go “all in”, and with investors, purchased a location for Vegan Mario’s™ in California’s Ojai Valley. Renovations are expected to be completed by Spring 2012 and Amanda, armed with a Certificate in Plant-Based Nutrition from Cornell University, is looking forward to using her extensive experience in video production to promote Vegan Mario’s™. In addition to making commercials, she is in pre-production for a web series based on their start-up.
Throughout her career, Amanda has interviewed thousands of people from celebrities such as Will Smith, Diddy, Gene Simmons and Ludacris, to senior political and media figures such as Dan Rather, Mike Huckabee and Tom Vilsack. But perhaps her favorite people to chat with on-camera are those she meets during her trademark man-on-the-street segments. She plans to incorporate these candid interviews with real people in her newest project.
Amanda’s career has been documented in The New York Times, BusinessWeek, Newsweek, NPR, CNN, MSNBC, PBS, The CBS Evening News, The Washington Post, The LA Times, The Hollywood Reporter, WIRED, People Magazine, Interview Magazine, Cosmopolitan Magazine, and on countless blogs. She has appeared on CSI: Crime Scene Investigation playing herself, and has written for WIRED, PopularScience.com and SXSW Magazine.
Are you like me?
I used to always look forward to the start of a new television season in anticipation of what new TV shows were going to be produced and shown.
It was like watching the networks throwing their new shows against the wall and seeing which ones would stick.
It was like the networks would run their new shows up the flagpole to see who would salute.
It was like the network executives in charge of new programming would throw all their new shows into a pool to see which ones would rise to the top and which ones would sink to the bottom.
It was like wondering which of the new shows would become a hit and how many shows the following season would be blatant rip-off copies of it.
However, in the Golden Days of television a new season would start in the fall and run until the following spring.
No more. Nowadays, a new season begins when the executives of a TV show say it begins. A “season” can last for 10 shows, 5 shows, and in most cases only 1 show. “One and done,” as they say in show business.
So, here is my evaluation of what new TV series I have seen so far this new “season” of 2011. Times and titles may be different in your area:
“Pan Am” (ABC) is an attempt by a TV network to cash in on the success of AMC’s “Mad Men,” set in the Sixties, glamorous men and women smoking, drinking and having sex, etc. Well, remember: “Imitation is the sincerest of flattery.” Charles Caleb Colton said that. “Imitation is the sincerest form of television.” Fred Allen said that. “Hollywood has run out of ideas.” I said that. I have seen all the episodes, it follows a bevy of stewardess beauties, but it is somewhat difficult to keep characters straight, especially when you have two sisters who look alike. Sure, it’s preposterous to believe that a “stew” would be selected by the CIA to work as an agent, but isn’t all television preposterous? I give it “Three Fingers Up.”
I am more interested in watching the returning series, “The Good Wife” on CBS, “Desperate Housewives” on ABC and “Masterpiece Mystery” on PBS.
“2 Broke Girls” (CBS) is another “Odd Couple” rip-off, this time with two young women who share an apartment in New York and are both waitresses for the same funky restaurant. One is brunette and poor, the other is blond and used to be rich, who somehow managed to bring her horse with her to live in the back yard with them. It is amusing, but I see how it can wear thin pretty quickly. I give it “Three Fingers Up.”
I’m sticking with the returning series, “How I Met Your Mother” on CBS; “Two and a Half Man” on CBS, until Ashton Kutcher kills the show with his doofus personality; and “Castle” on ABC. Detective Beckett is a babe!
“Unforgettable” (CBS) is another crime-solving show with a gimmick: The good-looking female cop played by Poppy Montgomery is one of those few people who remember everything that happened to them in their lives. When the series started, she said in voice-over narration, “Only five people in the world can remember everything that happens to them.” Then when “60 Minutes” did a story on all the people they could find who could do this and came up with about 30, Poppy changed her introduction to “Only a few people….” However, this gimmick is going to wear thin, because what happens is that the cops don’t have to search for clues anymore. Poppy’s character just remembers something to let them catch the criminal! I give it “Three Fingers Up.”
I’m also sticking with “Parenthood” on NBC. Try it, you’ll like it.
“Revenge” (ABC) supposedly was influenced by The Count of Monte Cristo, the 1844 novel by Alexandre Dumas, but here the main character is a woman who returns to The Hamptons on Long Island to exact revenge on all the high-society people she believes wronged her father when she was a little girl and caused his death. But at the rate she’s going, how can this last more than one “season”? Surely, the series won’t follow her after she gets caught and thrown into prison, will it? (I know! I know! Don’t call you “Shirley”!) I give it “Three Fingers Up.”
I’m also sticking with “Harry’s Law” on NBC, which had a very short run last “season.”
Thursday is the best night for television, but the worst night for watching television, as I always say. (I always say that.) There are seven hours of network television that I would like to see, and they are all in conflict with each other.
“Whitney” (NBC) is a new sitcom starring a comedienne named Whitney. She lives with her boyfriend, and they have wacky complications in their lives, most of which they create themselves. I give it “Three Fingers Up.”
“Prime Suspect” (NBC) is not only a blatant “rip-off” of the successful British series starring Helen Mirren about a female detective who becomes chief of detectives and has to fight the male chauvinism in her department while she is also fighting crime and catching criminals, but the network didn’t even change the title of the series. In this American version, Maria Bello is only one of the detectives in New York City who has to fight the male chauvinism in her department while catching criminals. I give it “Three Fingers Up.”
However, my biggest problem with Thursday nights is trying to watch and record everything I want to: I also like “The Big Bang Theory” and “Rules of Engagement” on CBS; “The Return of Sherlock Holmes” on PBS, which is “technically” “new,” but, after all, it is Sherlock Holmes; “Grey’s Anatomy” and “Private Practice” on ABC; and “Community,” “Parks and Recreation” and “The Office” on NBC. What to do. What to watch. What to record.
Friday is one of the worst nights for new television, as the only show I watch is the returning “Blue Bloods” on CBS. Detective Baker is a babe!
Saturday is the absolute worst night for new television. I can’t think of anything “new” that I watch. And, remember: Some new shows have already been canceled, some I never got to watch, and a few that I did. “The Playboy Club” comes to mind, but it was ruined by making a murder the main story-line instead of beautiful women. It was another attempt to copy the success of “Mad Men” on AMC, but it was done in by protests from organizations that hadn’t even seen the show and by bad writing.
“GAME THEORY” OF TELEVISION
Which brings me to my idea for saving television and replacing the insane way that networks introduce new shows. Rather than trying to promote their new series and making them successful, networks try to kill off the successful series on competing networks by scheduling their new shows in direct competition against the other networks’ successful shows. This is not only bad thinking on their part, but it drives the viewers crazy!
A television series is successful, because a lot of viewers are watching it. They are watching it, because they like it. If you put a new show up against a show they like, they’re not going to give the new show a chance! They are going to continue watching the show they like, and therefore any new show most likely won’t stand a snowball’s chance in Hades to succeed. (You could look it up.)
Now, if you’re old enough to remember the Golden Days of television, cream rose to the top, successful and popular shows won out over the competition, and networks became known for their “nights” of the week: NBC had Thursdays, anchored by “Seinfeld.” CBS had Saturdays, anchored by “All in the Family.” And ABC had Tuesdays, anchored by “Roseanne.”
Well, didn’t anyone see A Beautiful Mind, the 2001 movie about John Nash, the brilliant mathematician who won the Nobel Prize for his “game theory”?
As I remember it, his theory was that instead of competitors fighting against each other and only one winning, they should cooperate with each other and then everyone wins. This could work in the television world.
Now, there might be some legal “complications” involved, by my Game Theory of Television would work like this: The major networks get together and divide up the week among them.
For example, ABC chooses Monday and shows all their “best” series on that night. CBS chooses Tuesday and shows all their most-favored series on that night. FOX chooses Wednesday and shows all their preferred series on that night. And NBC takes Thursday (which used to be their “night,” anyway) and shows all their selected series on that night. Then Fridays are used for all the networks to try out their new shows, and the weekends could be for movies, specials, and other shows that don’t fit in with this new Game Theory of Television. Then on the nights that aren’t “their” night, the other networks could schedule new shows, shows that aren’t “successful,” and reruns. Then when any of these shows do become successful, the network would move it to the night of the week that is their night.
Everybody wins and nobody loses, least of all the viewers. It could work.
Goodbye and good watching.
Boulder Channel 1s TV Beat written by Guy McKenzie is a sometime column appearing when the networks release new shows or when they cancel good ones. Guy McKenzie is a well know television critic and has been Watching TV regularly since the days of tubed TV. Mr McKenzie has been a big screen as well as small screen actor, co-hosted Two More Guys at the Movies with his long time side man Guy Spelvin.
Boulder Public Library celebrates 25th anniversary of BoulderReads! program
Boulder Public Library will commemorate 25 years of the BoulderReads! literacy program on Friday, Oct. 14, with a community celebration, from 4:30 to 6 p.m. in the Canyon Gallery at the Main Library, 1001 Arapahoe Ave. (north wing).
Twenty-five years ago, Boulder Public Library created a new program to help adults improve their reading and writing. At that time, ABC and PBS were running a two-year campaign to raise awareness about how many adults in America were unable to read and write at the level needed to be fully functional as parents, employees and community members.
“One of the best benefits of that campaign was that adults who struggled with reading realized that they were not the only people with that difficulty,” said BoulderReads! Director Diana Sherry. “Another benefit was that they learned that community programs existed or were being created to serve them.”
Libraries were one of the front runners in this effort, and BoulderReads! was one of those new programs. Since 1986, BoulderReads! has grown to serve around 300 adults and children every year. Its core services include free, one-on-one tutoring at four public libraries and the Boulder County Jail, GED classes and testing, a Reading Buddies program for children, and numerous support activities for these learners, as well as the general public.
This 25-year milestone will be celebrated by the BoulderReads! students, volunteers and funders, as well as other interested community members. To attend, please RSVP to Laurie Watkins at 303-441-3151 or via email to: firstname.lastname@example.org.